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Discussion Starter #1
Hi folks!

New guy here from N. California! Hope I find you all well!

I come here seeking advice. I have stumbled upon a 2005 K1200LT with 24,**+ miles on it for $9,999...before negotiations. The add reads as such:
This Light Yellow Metallic (actually looks champagne) has all the standard equipment, but also comes with some very nice options. Convenience Package, Central locking System, Top case rack with brake, heated grips, power centerstand, anti theft alarm system, dual accessory socket, heated custom Corbin seats, cruise control, CD changer and folding highway pegs.
I've never owned a BMW but have been riding 26 years...the last 4 on a Buell Ulysses...I have read a gazillion reviews on this bike and the ONE thing that stands out is it seems an awful lot of these riders drop this bike. That is kind of disconcerting. BUT, I figured what better place to come to get some real advice than a board with honest to goodness Beemer riders!

Sooooo, having said that.

  1. Am I getting a good deal as far as cost?
  2. I will be using this for commuting as well...being in CA I can lane share...what are your opinions?
  3. In your experience...gas mileage?
  4. Communications system...any good?
  5. How easy is it to add a Garmin to?
  6. Comfort??
I have a couple weeks as I can't purchase this until March 9th but if I make a decision I can put a deposit down for them to hold as it's a dealer.

I hope you all are having a great night and I look forward to getting to know the folks around here!

Kirk
 

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Welcome to the forum.
First off this is a top heavy bike, once you get going above 5 MPH it is a great ride. You will drop it at some point.
As far as lane splitting, good luck. Take off the mirrors first, they are expensive to replace. I do not think there are too many people who do it with a LT. Once again it is a top heavy bike, at slow speeds and it is quite wide. Then again ,it will be you riding it and you make the decision.
Keep the front wheel straight when stopping,
Watch the brakes, they are very good for such a big bike.
If you can get some type of warranty, from the dealer, do it.
Enjoy the ride it is a great bike and loves to be ridden. Keep the rpm,s around 4 k and she will keep a smile on your face.
 

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They don't let us lanesplit in Colorado. I would never have considered doing so on the Cruiser I had before this (just based on sneaking it out of the driveway between our cars). The LT is _wider_ than that cruiser was.

I know how big a deal lane splitting is to Californians. It can take a 90 minute commute and drop it to 20, I dunno if that's a deal breaker for you or not. She's a big BIG girl.

Mileage can approach and crest 52 mpg, and the sucker is Very comfortable, so long as you and the seat are compatible.

Can't vouch for the communication system. I use an iPhone 4s and a Scala Teamrider kit on my helmet.

After some handwaving on my trade-in (which, face it, I took a bath on) my 05 with 34k miles came to $9500.
 

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Welcome aboard. As said above, the bike is top heavy. It takes some practice at slow speeds in a parking lot. Big thing is, don't hit the brakes with the front wheel turned. Keeping it upright also depends on how tall you are. I am 5'8" and I cannot flat foot with both feet at a stop. As for adding a Garmin, lots of us have done that with no problems. Good luck with your choice.
 

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Am I getting a good deal as far as cost? I think so, make sure everything works as it should and check the service history to be sure it's up to date.
I will be using this for commuting as well...being in CA I can lane share...what are your opinions? Never did it so I don't know.
In your experience...gas mileage? I average about 44 mpg.
Communications system...any good? I have the voice II system and I like it, it's a corded system but that doesn't bother me.
How easy is it to add a Garmin to? I have the BMW Nav III, if you find the mounting kit and Nav it should be plug and play.
Comfort?? Lots of it, I keep the seat on the high position and don't have an issue with the weight or being top heavy. 5'10" 185lbs. Respect the weight but don't fear it.

All the bikes and all the years this is by far my favorite.
 

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Hey ya Kirk Welcome aboard

Price seems about right given year and mileage.

I use mine for commuting 50 miles a day its an 09 average 42 mpg can get to 48 if I slowed down some :)

Communications not bad I changed mine to a Starcom system and love it for two up riding.
Garmin will mount right up.

Comfort is outstanding you may or may not need to make some changes to it, the OEM seat for me was no good I changed to a custom saddle also changed shocks now it just floats down the highway very easy to go all day without having to get off.

Its a very different ride you'll find yourself up looking down into trucks its that tall, at speed she is highly nimble and love's hard corners, at walking pace it can be a PITA just need to stay ahead of what you're doing.

I've set her down once because where I choose to land wasn't level on one side. lesson learned haven't had a problem since the only real caution is: Do not grab a hand full of brake with the bars turned you'll take a dirt nap faster then you can say Oh *&^%.

Lane sharing, well she's a big girl I wouldn't do it, that and she's water cooled so you don't need to worry about over heating.

Regards.
 

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As others have said, dropping it has to do with slow speed stopping with the steering not straight and using the front brake. It's quite a surprise the first time it happens! But, the tip over wings and trunk guards make it kinda' a non-event, other than the embarrassment. People will come out of the woodworks to help you right it and silently wonder what kind of rookie you are to drop your pretty new bike! Lane splitting might be a little tricky...it's wide. I get 45-50 mpg and I love the performance of the bike. I've quickly been spoiled by the electric adjustable windshield, the cruise control. the comfortable ride and the fact that it will keep up with most sport bikes in the twisties. Like many others, I have had a lot of bikes and this is by far the best I've had. By haunting this forum and doing proactive maintenance, I believe I've got it 99% bulletproof..
 

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Also want to add that if you use the side stand, it'll smoke at startup( normal) and you'll also want to keep it in 1st gear when on the side stand so it doesn't roll off.

Moving the bike in tight quarters or slightly up hill, don't be afraid to use the reverse gear. I use it all the time to back my bike into my garage. It's uphill going in, and for me it's the better option than rolling it backwards out of the garage.

Other than that, it's a kick in the a$$ to ride.
 

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Hi Kirk,

You've joined a great community, and if you buy the 05 LT you will have a great bike.

Buying used is always a gamble but with a used LT the odds are in your favor that it will be a good one. My experience with buying two LT's from the same dealer are mixed. The first one, an 00 model that I bought in 2005 and rode for the next 6 years and more than 40k miles could not have been better. I had known for a long time that the changes BMW made for the 05 model year were a leg up on the first generation and when I found an 05 model with 26k miles that I thought I could afford, I made the jump. I paid $10.2k for it last September. So I have to believe your price is good.

I note that the list of options you mention includes a few things that were standard equipment on the 05 LT, so if you dealer is saying those things add value over book price, he may not know.

One caution I offer from my own experience is check it out for any fluid leakage. My 00 LT was bullet proof and I never had to add any oil between 5K mile changes. I was pretty confident that the 05 would be the same. Not so. I have an oil leak and I am concerned that it may be the dreaded rear main seal that you will find disscussed on this website. My leak is minor and the clutch is not slipping at this time. But my concern is that it may eventually cost me near $2K to fix it.

So I would recommend that you look underneath the bike for any evidence of oil leakage, expecially aft of where the engine and transmission are mated. Look at least twice, before and after the longest test ride that you make.

Also my 05 had the dreaded cow bell problem with the rear brake disc. It isn't a safety issue but is annoying when your $10K toy rattles like a bell. After BMW and my dealer contributed $100 each to the cost, the rattle is fixed and my wallet is about $400 lighter.

As far as this community goes, I am very impressed. I am on the site almost every day, and the wisdom and experience that the members have and are so willing to share is extremely rich. I am not afraid to turn a wrench and with the information that is already available here, I may turn that that $2K rear main seal job into a mere $700 weekend project.

God bless and enjoy the ride,

JC "Tips" Thomas
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks folks! I appreciate all the fine comments, information and opinions!

I'm still a tad bothered about this dropping thing. I just don't drop my bikes. I HATE scratches. lol And to read that most of you have dropped it...does not install a great deal of confidence in me...I'll have to think about it. I mean, what was BMW THINKING building a bike that is so flippin' top heavy? Sounds like they all need to go back to engineering 101. he he

Yes, I went and took a physical look at the bike yesterday and it IS wide. But, the width, for me, is not the concern...I have a pretty decent eye when it comes to space. It's the low speed handling that is the real concern. Unfortunately, if I can't commute on the bike it renders itself pretty much useless for me. :( I have to be able to use it for that or look at a different bike. Time for deep reflection.

Again, thanks folks and I'll update what I do and buy when I do and buy it. lol Thanks a ton!

Kirk
 

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tips727 said:
Hi Kirk,

............As far as this community goes, I am very impressed. I am on the site almost every day, and the wisdom and experience that the members have and are so willing to share is extremely rich. I am not afraid to turn a wrench and with the information that is already available here, I may turn that that $2K rear main seal job into a mere $700 weekend project.

God bless and enjoy the ride,

JC "Tips" Thomas
Thanks, JC! Yes, I am already finding this forum to be laden with reputable, knowledgeable and hospitable folks! Good find! ;)

If I do decide to attempt this thing...even with my commute, I will definitely do a full "go over" as far as your, and others, recommendations for "what to look for".

This is a dealer selling it and they did say they went over the "checklist" but how many "reputable" dealers have said the same thing only to hose out the customer. lol

I'll definitely do my due diligence...thanks folks!

Kirk
 

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Welcome. I have '05 with 65K miles. Enjoyed every mile. Don't let the dropping issue scare (wrong word I know) you from enjoying this bike. Besides, the dropping easy, it's the picking it up that's a little more difficult. Just pick it up and get going.

Maintenance: Once the tupperware's off it's easy to work on. This site has a wealth of knowledge and many contributors on a vast subject material. They'll walk you through an oil change to clutch weep hole drilling.

Practice, practice, practice slow speed maneuvering. When I retun home from riding I usually, not always, go to a deserted section of my neighborhood and practice making Uturns within a 24' circle.

One more item, these bikes really like their turns (RPM's). When doing the twisties and mountains it's no concern to have her run up to 5-7K for engine braking and hill climbing.

Go ahead, pull the trigger, you won't be sorry.

GOOD LUCK, ride safely
 

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I'm sorry if my story scared you, Kirk. With the 05 model BMW fixed a lot of the drop problems by changing the steering geometry. I have not dropped my 05 yet after a little more than 3K miles. I did drop my 00 model about 4 times during the first two or three years I had it but after that never again. And there was no damage to it other than a light scuffing of the plastic crash bar covers and you had to look pretty hard to even see them.

And, the problems I have had with the new bike have not caused me to be one ounce less enthusiastic about the LT. Just ride it. Its the best motorcycle I have ever had.

JC "Tips" Thomas
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Good to know! :)

What I need to do is go ride the thing...physically looking at it is only half the battle, I guess. ;)

One final question...would there be a place I could look at/read the user manual online? I want to look at maintenance schedules, electronics etc....Does this model/year come with a 12volt power point??

Close to a decision...I do have to give the Yamaha Midnight Star Venture a turn, though, as I promised the man and have an appt. tomorrow. But, that's part of the due diligence. :)

Thanks!

Kirk
 

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Comes with two 12v plug locations.

I think if you do a search here you'll find a manual or at least a link for one the better manual you'll need is a clymer's shop manual when or if you buy it.

Try here for Manual
 

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Oh yeah, I'm sure you'll find slow speed riding is no problem at all...it's just when you're stopping with the front wheel turned...ever so slightly and using a good bit of the front brake...at least with the pre 05 bikes, it'll take you down. I've learned to release the front brake when I get close to being stopped. Although I'm retired, I have ridden in stop and go traffic and it's no harder than any other bike I've ridden to creep along.
 

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Hey, Kirk -

Best way to tell is to ride it (or one like it) - dealer should let you out on it. That's what sold me on my first one. That and W LOVES the back seat.

Have fun shopping!! Oh - on the 'dropping' thing - there is a post in here somewhere that shows how to pick him (ok, mine is a he) up. Quite easy. Those black things (wings) just ahead of your feet are tip-over-bars to minimize damage.

Can almost guarantee you will love it!!
 

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This could have been my question regarding the LT about 8 months ago. Having come from the Harley world and coming home fatigued from the somewhat antiquated suspension on my latest purchase I decided to look for a much more comfortable ride. Talking to some motor officers who switched from Harley's to BMW's and stated they would never go back, I felt I found the manufacturer worth looking into. I researched the internet and stumbled onto this forum. It provides a wealth of information! I was heading to work one day and on the side of the road was a guy sitting on his LT programming his GPS looking for a particular road that I ride often. We talked for over an hour. He answered every question about the LT that I needed answered. Later that evening I happened to find a 2008 for sale and called the owner and we met that following weekend. I sold both of my Harley's and purchased the LT. My first thought when throwing a leg over this beast is "I made a mistake". The first time I applied the front brake I about sailed over the handlebars. Let me be precise, BMW brake systems work extremely well and take a little finesse when first learning to ride the LT. To date I've ridden my LT over 10,000 miles and I can't wait to get back in the saddle each and every day. The ride is so comfortable, the handling is remarkable and the engine and transmission are well suited for a luxury touring motorcycle of this size. Believe me, the more you ride this machine the more you will enjoy the ride..Good luck..you won't be sorry!

Mezzavo said:
Hi folks!
New guy here from N. California! Hope I find you all well!

I come here seeking advice. I have stumbled upon a 2005 K1200LT with 24,**+ miles on it for $9,999...before negotiations. The add reads as such:

I've never owned a BMW but have been riding 26 years...the last 4 on a Buell Ulysses...I have read a gazillion reviews on this bike and the ONE thing that stands out is it seems an awful lot of these riders drop this bike. That is kind of disconcerting. BUT, I figured what better place to come to get some real advice than a board with honest to goodness Beemer riders!

Sooooo, having said that.

  1. Am I getting a good deal as far as cost?
  2. I will be using this for commuting as well...being in CA I can lane share...what are your opinions?
  3. In your experience...gas mileage?
  4. Communications system...any good?
  5. How easy is it to add a Garmin to?
  6. Comfort??
I have a couple weeks as I can't purchase this until March 9th but if I make a decision I can put a deposit down for them to hold as it's a dealer.

I hope you all are having a great night and I look forward to getting to know the folks around here!

Kirk
 

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SoCalHoss said:
This could have been my question regarding the LT about 8 months ago. Having come from the Harley world and coming home fatigued from the somewhat antiquated suspension on my latest purchase I decided to look for a much more comfortable ride.
It is excessively weird coming home from a ride and not feeling fatigued, my hands and forearms don't hurt, my fingers aren't tingling, and my ears aren't ringing.
 
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